Tuesday, March 17, 2009

An Additional Celtic Hymn for St. Patrick's Day

To honor St. Patrick's Day, here is another Celtic hymn, though not one written by the saint himself. The words are traditionally attributed to Ireland's blind poet-saint, St. Dallan Forgaill (d. 598). A recording is below (which is far from perfect, but the most reverent and least "Christian contemporary" I could find online.)

Be Thou My Vision
Be Thou my vision, O Lord of my heart,
Be all else but naught to me, save that Thou art;
Be Thou my best thought in the day and the night,
Both waking and sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Be Thou my wisdom, be Thou my true Word,
Be Thou ever with me, and I with Thee Lord;
Be Thou my great Father, and I Thy true son;
Be Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one.

Be Thou my breastplate, my sword for the fight;
Be Thou my whole armor, be Thou my true might;
Be Thou my soul's shelter, be Thou my strong tower:
O raise Thou me heavenward, great Power of my power.

Riches I heed not, nor man's empty praise:
Be Thou mine inheritance now and always;
Be Thou and Thou only the first in my heart;
O Sovereign of Heaven, my treasure Thou art.

High King of Heaven, Thou Heaven's bright sun,
O grant me its joys after victory is won;
Great Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
Still be Thou my vision, O Ruler of all.

Be Thou My Vision - The Irish Tenors


(The poem contains an interesting, pre-Schism reference to the Heart, as well....)

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